We drove home from Jake’s moms one morning and stopped at McDonalds for a cup of coffee to share. As we pulled away from the drive thru I was happy. It was one of those moments when your heart is full and you feel thankful for the simple opportunity in front of you, a beautiful peace-filled drive with your husband.
I removed the lid from the large coffee we were to share and poured a creamer in. Jake had an empty Styrofoam cup in the car and as I got ready to pour half of our coffee into his cup I glanced over at him. He was frowning. He didn’t say anything but in an instant I realized what I had done. He didn’t want creamer in his coffee. I knew this. I’d made this mistake before. Why didn’t I remember? My heart sank and my happy moment vanished in an instant. I started to cry, and not just a little. I bawled. What on earth was wrong with me? I have heard of crying over spilt milk, but coffee with misplaced creamer?
I had two thoughts as I began to cry. One, I ruined it. I ruined a beautiful moment. And two, why couldn’t he just drink the coffee. Soon I realized what was really going on. I collected myself and turned to my husband who was feeling terrible. In a nutshell I bumbled through an explanation like this, “I’m sorry. I’m just crying because this is my issue, my big issue. I’m scared I’ll ruin something. I’m scared I’ll ruin something really big. Like my chance to get into heaven.” I know it sounds crazy but I had a history with this topic. My husband knew about it. We had talked about it before. He nodded in understanding.
I faced the open road and wondered why I was so afraid of messing up. I looked at the coffee. I wanted to get rid of it. I wanted to pitch it out the window…
Then it was the most amazing thing. All I can say is that grace poured into the moment. And a wonderful truth came to my heart. I turned back to my husband. “I’ve got it,” I said. “I’ve got the truth. Jesus will drink the coffee.”
On the hinge of that truth things swung in a different direction. I began thinking about the cup of sin and suffering that Jesus said he would drink when he went to the cross. He was speaking figuratively of course but that cup he would drink held all my sins and mistakes. Because I haven’t just ruined a cup of coffee. That’s the least of it. I’ve ruined opportunities and relationships, with things I’ve said or done, or haven’t said, or done. And Jesus, my Lord, is the only person I know who will take the cup of my mistakes, past present and future, and drink it.
What a gift. Who of us wouldn’t wish for that? And want that. Want that hero to come into our lives and swallow all that stuff so we can be free. And forgiven. So we can smile again. Hope again. And try again. Makes me want to shout Halleluiah!
I thought about this truth and felt a deep happiness. I looked at the cup of coffee I had wanted to pitch out the window and I wanted to drink it. Because now it was a communion cup, a celebration of Jesus sacrifice for me. I sipped that coffee and I drank deeply of the love of God.
My husband smiled at me. “I want some of that coffee,” he said. So I poured some into his cup. He took a sip then lifted his cup up in my direction. “Cheers. To Jesus,” I said as I touched my cup to his.
Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them saying, “Drink from it, all of you. This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”
Matt. 26:27-28 NIV